Yes, I know. I know.
What I mean is that HL2 is an 8 or 9 instead of a 10/10.
The water canals and the much of the boat sequence were a bore, slowed down the pace and occured way too early. The on-land vehicle didn't handle well and those sections dragged too. It felt like "drive to point b" rather than slink around in a dystopic world as the story implies.
The levels as incredibly diverse as the were didn't feel like a whole believable world, but rather just a series of disconnected levels to add variety to the gameplay. Your companion Alyx wasn't really a deep character and it felt like she was just a device to reward the player by having a girl fawn over him. And the "bosses".
Episode 1 was just a military shooter wannabe. Meh. Episode 2 definitely did a better job at condensing a lot of story and action into a small amount of time though.
And yes, I played them "back then".